“How To” Lighten Southgate Ejectors (on a Side by Side)

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Old No7
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“How To” Lighten Southgate Ejectors (on a Side by Side)

#1 Post by Old No7 » Tue Jul 18, 2017 12:25 pm

Some shooters may complain about the highly sprung Southgate Ejectors on a side-by-side shotgun, causing overly aggressive ejection and tough/difficult cocking efforts, and I had the very same issues with my Dickinson Estate 20 ga SXS when it was first new (as made by Akus, the same maker of the S&W and SKB sxs's).

There may be other ways to do this, and you are on your own if you attempt to duplicate this -- but this fix worked for me over two years ago, and continues to work fine for me today. Based on those results, below is some information on what I have done to lessen/modify my ejectors, as the ejection of empties could almost take your eye out! Or even risked taking the eye out on someone standing 12 to 15 feet behind me! No kidding... They came out with authority! And, it was not fun to recock the action either…

Now, after firing many 100's if not well over 1,000 rounds since I first did the work over two years ago, I am finally posting this info here in this forum. (Before now, you'd only see it if you wandered into the "Turkish Shotguns" section over on ShotgunWorld and saw it there.)

To start with, here's an image of the Beesley patent for ejectors which shows how the parts work together:
Beesley Patent - Southgate Ejectors.jpg

And this is an image (from another forum member on SW) of how the Dickinson's Southgate Ejector mechanism looks when taken off the forearm wood -- note the untouched and quite thick ejector springs:
(And the nicely executed checkering too.)
Dickinsons Ejectors 01.jpg

This image shows how I carefully -- and very slowly, so as not to heat and change the temper of the springs -- removed some material from the springs to lessen the force of ejection:
Dickinson Ejector after (Small).JPG

At first, I had just removed the springs, but I wasn't at all pleased with the resulting 1/16" of extraction that was attained after the ejector springs were taken out. So I bit the bullet, so to speak, and worked on only one spring first, to see if I could make any improvements without ruining it. It worked fine.

Now, after the work was done on both springs, and which continues to work fine even today, with a light push, the fired hulls are ejected just 3 feet or so. It's much more manageable, and they're easier to catch in my hand when saving hulls on the firing line. Plus, as expected, it has made the gun so much smoother and easier to open after firing.

I have to say I am really happy with the results, as I was seriously in danger of putting my own or someone else's eyes out before they were adjusted. And it wasn't fun to recock the gun either, especially on the trap line or skeet field where other shooters like to shoot in a certain rhythm.

I've been cautioned to try to avoid ever replacing those springs, as it's reportedly quite a b*tch to get the fit and timing right for the tips of new springs, but I guess we'll just have to find out how long they'll last as is. And "knock on wood", the modified springs are still working fine for me and I am very pleased with the outcome.

I hope this helps out someone with the same issues. :wink:

And if there are better ways to "DIY" this fix, I'm open to that feedback too.

Old No7
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